People often think cats and dogs are enemies, but cat expert Jackson Galaxy and Zoe Sandor, host of Animal Planet’s My Cat From Hell, want to break that notion.
Jackson Galaxy claims that cats and dogs will become friends when raised together in a positive, loving and encouraging environment. Or at least expressing that they can tolerate each other. Let’s take a look at how we get cats and dogs used to each other in light of the information we’ve received from these two experts.
1. Consider the character of cats and dogs, not their breed
Contrary to popular belief, some cat and dog breeds are not friendlier than others. According to Galaxy and Sandor, it’s more important to consider their personality and energy level. If the dog is aggressive, he will not get along with a shy cat. An aging dog, on the other hand, will not want to share its space with an active kitty.
It is very important that these two animals are compatible in terms of personality. When adopting a pet, find out how it gets along with other animals from previous owners or from the shelter.
2. Train your dog
Teach your dog to control his impulses so that he can spend time successfully with your cat.
3. Give the cat its own space before meeting the dog
According to Galaxy, cats need their own sheltered space. This shelter should be a place where the dog cannot enter.
Because cats are natural climbers, Galaxy recommends buying tall cat scratchers, installing shelves, or placing cat beds on bookshelves. This allows cats to follow the dog from a safe distance or move around without touching the floor when moving from one room to another. However, keep dogs away from the litter box. Cats should feel safe doing their job.
4. Exercise your dog
According to Sandor, dogs need to release their energy to be able to control themselves when cats are around. Dogs need a lot of fun too. Doing this under control prevents cats from attacking, even while playing.
5. Let them get used to their smells
The book Galaxy Total Cat Mojo states that cats and dogs should be allowed to sniff each other’s beds and toys before meeting face to face. This way they won’t be strangers when they see each other for the first time.
6. Plan your first meeting with your cat/dog carefully
Just like humans, cats and dogs only get one chance to make a great first impression. Fortunately, they both love to eat, which may help them finally fall in love with each other.
Arrange for the first cat-dog meeting at mealtime, but keep the dog on a leash and keep both pets on opposite sides of a closed door. They will not see each other, but they will smell each other when they are immersed in their own food. This way they will associate the smell with food.
Repeat this process at every meal for a few weeks, then gradually let them see each other.
7. Separate food and toys
Once your cat and dog are successfully mated, keep the food containers separate. Because your cat may try to eat your dog’s food. Therefore, the dog can attack them. Also pay attention to the toys of the cat. Toy jealousy can also cause fights.
8. If possible, raise your dog and cat together
Socializing pets at a young age can be easier than introducing them as adults. According to Sandor, puppies are like “sponges” that easily adapt to new knowledge and situations. In addition, dogs at this age are smaller, which makes the cat more confident.
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